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New Mazda2 hitting UK showrooms

Created on 19/03/2015 @ 08:29
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Test Report by Graham Breeze

Mazda is recovering quickly after UK sales took a big hit because of the pound to yen exchange rate - and you can expect things to get even better now that the new Mazda2 is in showrooms.

There’s now a choice of 12 petrol and four dieses in a 16-strong line-up of the company’s best-selling UK model and a five level grade structure of SE, SE-L, SE-L Nav, Sport and Sport Nav with prices from £11,995 to £17,395.

And with the brand’s Skyactiv technology on board it’s little wonder Mazda bosses are predicting a 24% sales growth this year against pretty flat industry sales.

The B-segment is a tough place to compete but using Skyactiv technology with its striking 'KODO - Soul of Motion' design philosophy, Mazda claim this model brings new levels of technological sophistication, driving pleasure and safety to the party.

At first glance there’s no mistaking this latest addition to the Mazda family which has particularly attractive headlamp styling and a muscular stance.

But the outstanding features for me come in the safety department where Mazda has really outshone the rest of the competition in this sector.

There’s an array of active safety systems which you don’t normally gert at this level, including Anti-lock Brakes (ABS), Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD), Electronic Brake Assist (EBA), Dynamic Stability Control (DSC), Traction Control System (TCS) and  Emergency Stop Signalling (ESS).

You also get,Hill Hold Assist (HHA) and a Tyre Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS as standard across the model range.

SE-L (90ps & 105ps Diesel), Sport, Sport Nav grades and the Sports Launch Edition model are further equipped with a Lane Departure Warning System (LDWS), and Smart City Brake Support (SCBS).

Operating between speeds of 2.5 and 18.5mph, SCBS automatically applies the brakes if the system detects an imminent frontal impact.

And there’s an optional Safety Pack on 115ps Sport Nav models offering even higher levels of driver assistance with High Beam Control (HBC), Blind Spot Monitoring (BSM) and Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA) system, and an Active Driving Display.

Mazda has gone even further by Introducing my favourite technology to the model with the arrival of head-up display to the B-segment for the first time. That means you get to see your speed displayed on the windscreen, so there’s no excuse for picking up tickets.

The cabin is a comfortable place to be with increased shoulder room up front, but it’s still a little tight for six-footers in the back and the boot fails the golf clubs test unless you fold down the splitting rear seats.

There’s now an easy to handle “multimedia commander” situated between the front seats which enables the driver to control the seven-inch touch screen display system.

DAB radio features for the first time in the Mazda2 and, in SE-L Nav and Sport Nav grades, a new navigation system offers improved search features and three years of free map updates.

Mazda's in-car connectivity system works with compatible iPhone and Android smartphones to access a variety of free mobile content via Aha, a cloud platform-based service which features thousands of stations, personalised, location-based services and both Twitter and Facebook audio feeds. MZD Connect also supports iPod®, MP3 and CD playback, terrestrial radio, SMS and readout functions.

The Skyactive 105PS Sports Diesel is my favourite from the range at £17,395 and producing only 89g/km of emissions. On top of that you can reach 62mph in 10.1secs and get a top speed of 111mph and still achieve over 80mpg.

Mazda might just be under-cooking their sales predictions. I think we will be seeing a lot of this car in the next 12 months.

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